News / Europe

Spain Dismisses ETA Cease-Fire

Spain's Interior Minister said Monday a cease-fire declaration from the Basque separatist group ETA is "insufficient". The armed group announced its ceasefire on Sunday.

Interior Minister Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba told Spanish television that ETA's cease-fire statement falls far short of what the government demands.

ETA sent a video to the BBC that was aired on Sunday. In it three masked militants sit behind a table. Speaking in the Basque language, one says ETA will no longer use offensive armed action.

The militant says it is a decision that was taken by the groups some months ago.

But the group did not say how long the cease-fire would last or if and when they would hand over their weapons.

Minister Rubalcaba said it was not enough . He said the announcement comes at a moment of "extreme weakness" for the separatists, following a major crackdown by Spanish and French police. The group has not carried out a deadly attack in Spain since August of last year.

The group has been fighting a separatist campaign since the 1960s and in that time has killed over 800 people.

But this is not the first time they have announced a cease-fire. Peace negotiations began in 2006 after ETA promised to end its violent tactics. But talks ended in December of the same year after ETA killed two people in a car bomb attack.

Since then the government has said it would not negotiate unless ETA makes a full-fledged statement that it will lay down arms forever.

In Spain, some people are optimistic this will mark the beginning of peace. But many have reacted cautiously.

ETA is considered a terrorist organization by the United States and the European Union. Its aim is to win an independent Basque nation made up of a northwest region of Spain and three departments in southwest France.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

This forum has been closed.
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.